Breed Spotlight: Smooth Fox Terrier

Four Minutes
Jan 19, 2023

Smooth Fox Terrier Quick Stats


12 – 15 years


15 – 18 lbs


13 – 15.5 inches




Friendly, playful, affectionate

Common Health Problems:

Legg-Calve-Perthes disease, luxating patella, mitral valve disease

Smooth Fox Terrier: How Do I Look?

The smooth fox terrier, known as the “gentleman of the terrier world,” is a regal and lively breed that was originally created to assist British hunters with their fox hunts.3 The dogs sit at 15.5 inches at their tallest and range from 15 to 18 pounds. They resemble their fellow fox terrier breed, the wire fox terrier, except for their smooth coat and head shape.

Coat Type and Colors

The smooth fox terrier’s coat is as their name suggests. They have a smooth double coat that, similar to the wire fox terrier, is primarily white with other markings. Smooth fox terriers can be found in the following color combinations:

  • White
  • White and black
  • White and tan
  • White, black, and tan


Like the wire foxie, smooth fox terriers have small ears that are V-shaped and fall close to the faces. As mentioned, their ears should be cleaned often to prevent wax buildup and ear infections.

Shedding and Grooming

While smooth fox terriers are moderate shedders, they require minimal grooming to maintain their beautiful coats. Their coats can be bathed on an as-needed basis, but their ears and teeth should be cleaned as often as possible to prevent infections.

Drooling Level

Smooth fox terriers are not known to be droolers, so you can rest assured that your favorite fabrics should be slobber-free.

Smooth Foxie: Personality Traits

What My Adoption Bio Would Say:

Spunky and snuggly, I’m the perfect companion! Whether you want to run around with me or nap on the couch, I happily adapt to any situation. I’ll defend my family and show them all the love I can in my little body!


Smooth fox terriers are bubbly and affectionate dogs who have a protective nature when it comes to their people. Play is a way of life for them, so they’re best suited for high-energy environments that can match their lively temperament.

Exercise Needs

This high-energy bundle of joy needs a good amount of exercise to fulfill their needs. Smooth fox terriers are well-suited for morning jogs and walks around your neighborhood, along with games of fetch in the backyard. They also respond well to mental stimulation like puzzle toys to wear them out.

Good With Other Pets?

Smooth fox terriers can be trained to do well with other pets in the home, but they’re best suited as the only apple of their owner’s eye. Due to their terrier bloodline, they have a tendency to boss around their fellow canine siblings and may display aggression if it’s not handled appropriately.


This breed is known for their high intelligence, which makes the breed incredibly easy to train when they’re puppies. As they age, they can become stubborn and more difficult to train, so early intervention is key. Smooth fox terriers have the potential to excel in learning fun tricks — they’re sometimes shown as trick dogs in circuses, and even succeed in agility and trick competitions.

Good with Kids?

Smooth fox terriers are great family dogs due to their high energy level. They’ll be sure to keep your kids busy, and you’ll thank your kids for tiring out this hyper pup. They do best with families that have children older than 5 due to their smaller size, but can adapt well to families with younger children.

Barking Level

Like most terriers, the smooth foxie is likely to bark, but this can be controlled with proper training.

Smooth Fox Terrier History

The smooth fox terrier comes from a line of fox hunting terriers in England as far back as the mid-1800s.3 The breed was kept in a saddlebag and released when foxes went underground, explaining the modern-day breed’s tendency to dig and hunt as a means of releasing energy. Broken coated (modern-day wire fox terriers) and smooth terriers were originally part of the same breed, known as the fox terrier — the breed didn’t split until the mid-1980s, when they were distinguished as smooth fox terrier and wire fox terrier

Common Smooth Fox Terrier Mixes

There are plenty of options for a smooth fox terrier mix. Some popular mix options include:4

  • Smooth foxton: Smooth fox terrier and Boston terrier mix
  • Smooth foodle: Smooth fox terrier and poodle mix
  • Smooth fo-tzu: Smooth fox terrier and shih tzu mix
  • Smooth torkie: Smooth fox terrier and Yorkshire terrier mix
  • Smooth poxer: Smooth fox terrier and pug mix

How to Train a Smooth Fox Terrier

Due to the smooth fox terrier’s easy-to-train temperament, getting your pup to listen to you shouldn’t be too hard if you start them from a young age. Puppies with high energy do best learning impulse control commands through basic obedience training. If you’re implementing reward-based training, be sure to find what drives your individual pup — for some, it’s treats, but other terrier breeds prefer being given their favorite toy and some play time to reward for a job well done.

Smooth Fox Terrier Health Problems

Smooth fox terriers may experience a variety of health issues, including3:

  • Legg-Calve-Perthes disease: This disease results in bone weakness as a result of limited blood supply to the hip joint.
  • Luxating patella: This is a dislocated kneecap.
  • Mitral valve disease: This is a heart condition.

Protect your Pets

Even the healthiest of pups can come with unexpected vet costs. Pet insurance can help keep your dog and your bank account happy.

How Pet Insurance Can Help Smooth Fox Terriers

As an active breed, smooth fox terriers do often present joint and bone issues. Getting a dog insurance policy through MetLife Pet Insurance may offer relief and security by helping to offset the cost of diagnosis or treatment for your smooth fox terrier.1,2

Legg-Calve-Perthes disease in foxies

Legg-Calve-Perthes disease impacts smaller breeds, including both wire and smooth fox terriers.⁵ The symptoms of this disease are most often seen in dogs younger than a year old, but can also be found in older dogs if early diagnosis isn’t provided. Most dogs experience limping when the disease first presents itself, and early detection is key to keeping your dog happy and healthy.

If you sign up your foxie puppy for pet insurance, you may save big on conditions like Legg-Calve-Perthes disease before it becomes a pre-existing condition.² Get a quote to see if dog insurance fits into your life with your smooth foxie pup, and discover how dog insurance works to keep your dog a happy and healthy part of the family for as long as possible.

Protect your Smooth Fox Terrier with Pet Insurance

Enroll in 3 Easy Steps

Nothing in this article should be construed as financial, legal, or veterinary advice. Please consult your own advisors for questions relating to your and your pet’s specific circumstances.

1 Pet Insurance offered by MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is underwritten by Independence American Insurance Company (“IAIC”), a Delaware insurance company, headquartered at 485 Madison Avenue, NY, NY 10022, and Metropolitan General Insurance Company (“MetGen”), a Rhode Island insurance company, headquartered at 700 Quaker Lane, Warwick, RI 02886, in those states where MetGen’s policies are available. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is the policy administrator authorized by IAIC and MetGen to offer and administer pet insurance policies. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC was previously known as PetFirst Healthcare, LLC and in some states continues to operate under that name pending approval of its application for a name change. The entity may operate under an alternate, assumed, and/or fictitious name in certain jurisdictions as approved, including MetLife Pet Insurance Services LLC (New York and Minnesota), MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions Agency LLC (Illinois), and such other alternate, assumed, or fictitious names approved by certain jurisdictions.

2 Provided all terms of the policy are met. Application is subject to underwriting review and approval. Like most insurance policies, insurance policies issued by IAIC and MetGen contain certain deductibles, co-insurance, exclusions, exceptions, reductions, limitations, and terms for keeping them in force. For costs, complete details of coverage and exclusions, and a listing of approved states, please contact MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC.

3 “Smooth Fox Terrier,” American Kennel Club

4 “An Owners Guide to the Smooth Fox Terrier Temperament,” Dog Temperament

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